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Amazon’s trade-in program now pays out instantly for games, tech, and books

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Need some extra cash for your holiday shopping? Amazon is now issuing instant gift cards for customers who trade in used video games, laptops, and books via the company’s online storefront.

Previously, Amazon required trade-in customers to wait 10 days before receiving payment, in order to account for shipping time and item condition on arrival. Starting this week, the company is waiving its standard waiting period across multiple trade-in categories, starting with video games and select accessories.

Amazon’s trade-in program allows its customers to cast off their unwanted purchases in return for in-store credit. After picking a product to trade in via Amazon’s website, customers must then package the item and affix it with a prepaid shipping label before dropping it off at a UPS location for shipment.

While Amazon’s policy still requires customers to ship out their items within seven days of submitting a trade-in request, the company is no longer delaying gift card payouts during shipment. Customers now have instant access to their trade-in credit after filling out the necessary forms at Amazon’s website, making it easier to turn their unwanted possessions into gifts and household necessities.

As part of its exchange program, Amazon scans previous customer purchases for suggestions regarding trade-ins. The site’s trade-in suggestions largely target video games purchased directly from Amazon, though items like headphones, tablets, laptops, and books also appear to be eligible for instant trade-in credit.

Amazon’s trade-in credit favors current releases, and many recent games can be traded back to Amazon for a large percentage of their original retail price. Xbox One owners can trade in a boxed copy of Gears of War 4 for up to $26, for instance, while Paper Mario: Color Splash for the Wii U currently fetches a trade-in value of up to $30.

Customers who bought some of last year’s biggest releases via Amazon may be disappointed by current trade-in prices, however. The once-prized Pip Boy Edition of Fallout 4 can be traded in for just over $25, while the retail PlayStation 4 version of Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain tops out at $6.

Amazon customers can begin trading in their unwanted items for gift cards via this online form.

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